Tarentum adds registration form, reporting tools for vacant properties to website
Tarentum has added forms to both register and report vacant properties in the borough to its website.
The forms are there along with information on the borough’s new vacant property registration requirements.
Council approved the new regulations in June. They require all unoccupied buildings to be registered and inspected, and owners to pay a fee that increases the longer a building is empty.
Under the ordinance, all vacant and abandoned buildings and structures in the borough must be registered after 30 days of vacancy.
The annual registration fee is $150 for bulidings vacant for less than one year; $300 if vacant one year; $500 for two years; $1,000 for three to four years; $2,500 for five to nine years; and $5,000 for 10 years.
Property owners can request having the fee waived if they meet conditions including having all local municipal fees paid; a good faith effort shown to rent, sell or lease the space; pricing is consistent with similar buildings; the building complies with borough codes and ordinances; and the building is habitable.
The properties have to be inspected each year to see if they comply with minimum property maintenance, building and fire prevention codes. Owners will get a chance to fix any problems.
The annual registration fee is due July 15 of each year, and the annual inspection is scheduled at the same time.
Ater inspection, properties will have to be maintained, including vegetation, trash, and other concerns. They’ll also need to be secured against trespass, vandalism and rodents.
Vacant storefronts have to have a window display or screen on the first floor.
Owners of vacant properties who do not live within 40 miles of the borough need a local agent who will also be responsible for the property.
The borough’s website is tarentumboro.com.